amalthya: (Cool Future)
I'm going to see if I can make a slow progression back onto Livejournal, after a long, long absence. I could blame it all on my limited bandwidth in Congo, but if I'm honest, I was away from Livejournal even before I left the country.

I will definitely try to come back little by little -- I know too that many of the people I met at [ profile] yuki_onna and [ profile] justbeast's glorious wedding are LJers, and I'd like to keep in touch!

In the interim, I'm easy to find. I'm amalthya on Facebook, Twitter, and flickr.

If you add me, please comment here to let me know who you are!



Jan. 1st, 2009 12:00 am
amalthya: (amalthya)
Welcome to my Journal! I don't tag often enough to be of use, but feel free to poke around and please do comment and let me know you're here!

Most of my chimpanzee photography is no longer publicly available online, but if you'd like access to it, please email me.

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amalthya: (top of the world)
I would imagine that many people's characterizations of me include my various travels and foreign exploits. I've been traveling all over the UK this go-round, and having a splendid time.

I finally got to meet [ profile] faeriecween!! I even stayed in her nice Reading house, and met her boy AND her Boys.

I got to spend more than a minute at a time with [ profile] woofa, a friend I've had since the Uganda days who travels nearly as much as I do!!
In actuality, we got to spend nearly a week together, at her house in Fordingbridge! And it was incredible.

I even got to see Elizabeth Grant, a friend I'd had at Chapin 8,000 years ago, who is so happy and healthy in Oxford, UK that the night with her and her fiance was extremely enjoyable, even moreso than I had anticipated.

Now I'm on my final leg of the journey, which is far shorter than my last longterm trek. Two weeks only! But I'm here, in Edinburgh, Scotland, for the last leg of my journey and the biannual International Primatologists Society Congress. If you'll recall, I helped organize the last one in Entebbe, Uganda.

Anyway, for the first time in a long time, I feel really off my game and out of sorts and sort of lonely and homesick and rather unhappy. It's a big jump; I loved being in Reading and Fordingbridge, and most people would be astonished to hear that the travel was wearing on me, but what I guess I take for granted is the chance to refresh in the evenings and a (clean) place to lay my head.

And the Scottish experience has thus far been far from refreshing. Really, it's throwing me off.

Ironic, considering I've NEVER seen more gingers than I've seen since last night here in Edinburgh. I'm here with my people! I've even been asked for directions 6 times in my 3 hours out on the street.

But yea, I discovered yesterday that the Cowgate Hostel, a place I'd booked for 5 days in March starting today, completely cocked up my booking. I'd called from Annie's sister's house to ask if I could come a day earlier (July 31st) and the idiot at the desk changed my booking to August 31st.

Ergo, when I arrived last night at nearly 11 pm, they informed me that there was no available room on Saturday night, but that I "could" move into a 6 bed dorm room and then move back into my old room on Sunday afternoon.

Of course, then they sent me on my way, up three flights of stairs (with suitcase) to a drab 2 bed room next to a shower with a view out an extremely large window to construction scaffolding and an alleyway. And no window curtain.

It was a restless night on seemingly filthy sheets and a squeaky, cheap bed. I kept waking up everytime someone went to use the sink or the shower, in a room right next to mine as every sound of the hallway echoes and rattles in underneath my flimsy door.

Short hours later, I awoke to the sounds of heavy construction, and peered groggily through my large window only to be greeted by burly, ogling Scotsmen.

Not what I signed up for, and certainly not a restful night. I got out of the hostel as soon as possible, and wandered around the town, getting a sense of the area and finally stumbling upon an internet cafe. With food, and drink!

Perhaps I felt so off because I'd had nothing to eat or drink since last night with Annie. Low blood sugar? Ogling Scotsmen? I find that my tendency for today is not to explore anymore but to get, as I coined it when talking to [ profile] justbeast, eSolace.

I will probably wander about again to go and look at the new accommodation I booked while AT the internet cafe. The idea of staying in a 6 bed dorm room with NO security lockers was just not appealing. I'm not a princess, and I've stayed in hostels and lodgings all over Africa and Europe, so you can imagine how bad this place is to be giving me discomfort. For £50+ a night, maybe I can't expect luxury, but they could afford a window curtain.

There's also the pending worry about money, since this new place is costing me about £77/night instead of £56 and overall, I'm spending about £333 for four nights. Imagine doubling ALL those prices for their American equivalents! Gah! The poverty is crippling. I'm trying not to worry about it, while also trying not to spend any money. An interesting contrast.

So here I am, uncharacteristically uncomfortable while traveling, and actually budgeting and worrying about money and also posting on Livejournal! The horror! Who is this person?

Can you imagine?

Tell me good things happening in your lives. It will add to my eSolace. Before I go wandering through town again
amalthya: (top of the world)
Consistency is key.

Or at least, that's the "truth" I tell myself that holds friendships and life together.

But sometimes, it's the inconsistency that makes things easier. More jagged, and sometimes painful but overall, easier.

When I came back to the country, I didn't know for how long. In my mind, I'd be back in Uganda by Winter break in January. Of course, that didn't happen but it didn't mean that I didn't operate as though it would --

In the field we constantly had transitory relationships because none of us knew how long we would be in any one place, or where we would go next. It makes life easier, knowing that you don't have to make any promises.

After I didn't head to Uganda in January, I guess I started settling down a little. Call it inspiration by the people surrounding me -- [ profile] rosefox and [ profile] sinboy alone could have prompted me to stay in one place, but there were so many more people added to the mix -- a New York I'd previously experienced only with the volume down -- people like [ profile] xoder and extraordinary renewed friendships with Charles and Yenni and [ profile] infd and [ profile] noranac and brand new friendships with [ profile] ursus_archetype and [ profile] alexsirkman.

There's always a point, though, where you still feel stifled, or unhappy. Or, in my case, Ordinary. Same old emo, same old drama, same old bullshit.

As I told [ profile] blackiestark, leaving the country is the cleanest break you can get -- it answers all the questions automatically. "Of course they'd invite me to that party if I was in the country" -- or, "I'm sure that I'd get to see them more often if I wasn't so far away."

It automatically neglects the surety of mess, and hurt feelings, and confusion that is staying in one place for too long. It's my version of chasing the dragon -- trying to make everyone continually love me or want to be around me is a losing enterprise even from the getgo. People break up, feelings change, things are awkward, and nothing ever stays the same. Consistency, in that way, is a lie. It doesn't make the disappointment of change any less palpable.

I guess, too, that I like the certainty of being far away, and isolated, and not being able to depend on other people. Given other options, I do tend to cling to those around me. I enjoy knowing that they value my company. Even if it's only for a finite amount of time.

Part of me is astonished that I am getting to go back to Congo as soon as I am. The longer my academic career slogged on, the more sure I became that I would be relegated to stationary life for at least another few years. To have the opportunity now just fills me with purpose again. I flush talking about it, and for once, I don't feel like I need to fake interest or motivation in order to tackle my to-do list.

Which is, at this moment, incredibly long! Not only am I trying to get myself ready, but prepping Adam for what life will be like is a top priority too. And it's a strange feeling, but also a wonderful one I guess. Mostly it's the change between making a clean, full break and actually leaving someone out of the cut. It's a little scary -- Bush/Field time is so much a part of me, and part of what's really important to me. Wonder if Adam hates it? Or hates who I become in the field? Idle worries, yes. Most of me knows that Adam, who seems to get along with anyone and everyone, will have no trouble acclimating to a new climate and a new culture. It's probably scary just because it's new.

I'll keep writing here sporadically, but most of my Congo preparations are going into [ profile] lifeincongo -- a blog we'll both keep while I'm gone since I'm well aware that my huge, 5 entries-at-a-time postings from the field are a bit tough for most people's FLists to handle.

And who knows? Will things be the same when I come back?

There's always consistency in the possibilities of a fresh start.
amalthya: (isolation)
Sometimes, it just takes some perspective-

Me: It's Fourth of July here, and I'm going to eat veggie burgers
Cleve: Wish I were there! Very bored in Buta
Me: I'm so sorry you're bored! I'll eat a veggie burger for you! Or maybe take pictures of some fireworks, and you can return the favor next year!
Cleve: Good idea! I will swat a mosquito for you and also sweat some, as I am sure you are really missing the African Experience!
Me: Hot! Take pictures :P


Jun. 27th, 2008 10:39 am
amalthya: (Cool Future)
Is it just me, or is the entirety of the most recent XKCD made in tiny box form so that it can be userpic-ified?
amalthya: (top of the world)
I've tried to find the motivation and the time, more importantly, to get back onto the Livejournal bandwagon. According to their stats, people blog much less after they are 26. Well, I'm 28. I'm just late. Isn't that the norm for me?

According to good old Livejournal, I haven't blogged in about 1.5 months. So I'l start from there, and give you some photo accompaniment, too.

And I've been sitting on this entry for nearly a month. Sad, eh? No more excuses.

Johnny & Azania's Wedding )

My New Computer )

Chagi )

Adam Updates )

* Lauren's birthday and CU friends

* Reviews: Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Crystal Skull

* Reviews: The Incredible Hulk vs. Iron Man

* Visiting Ohio & Chilling with [ profile] justbeast

Hurricane Harbor )

* + 2 Cats, -1 Cat +1,000 Cat Abandonment Sympathy

* Dad's moving out

* Unpacking the apartment - potential dates for a housewarming

* Back and Forth to Maryland

* Link to MLOAD


It appears that I've run out of steam, but I will leave the list of things I meant to talk about with the hope of writing about them all in the future.

I will certainly mention now, though, that at the end of September/early October, I'm going back to Congo. It doesn't mean I won't finish my studies, or that I'm leaving New York for good, or anything else. It just means that I have the most incredible opportunity to do masters/senior thesis /doctoral dissertation-level research that I've been CONSUMED with preparing these last couple weeks. I'll be part of the Wasmoeth Wildlife Research team, but pretty much solo on this project. I'll also be helping to take care of and rehabilitate 2 orphaned chimpanzees.

The extra-crazy part? Adam wants to come with me. Nuts, right? We'll see if it actually happens.

Oh, and while my regular journal might stay only-sporadically updated, remember that I'm pretty rigorous about posting to the community [ profile] thegarlicbite and I started:

[ profile] mylife_onceaday

So, if you're keen to see what I'm doing while I'm not updating here, check out:

My Daily Photos There

And I do promise to update more. But for now, I'm running on low battery power and low energy!
amalthya: (gcal whore)
Yes, it's been a long time

Here's a tip: When you work with monkeys, you become a monkey. An envelope-stuffing, phone-answering TEMP MONKEY.

Why am I stuffing envelopes at Temple Israel for $12/hour?

You'll have to wait until I get home and write a proper entry to know.
amalthya: (photographer)
I Am A: Neutral Good Human Bard/Rogue (2nd/2nd Level)

Ability Scores:






The rest of it )

I'm really amused that I'm a Human Bard. Well, and a Rogue. I'd hope I wasn't just a Human Bard -- why don't you just give me no name and make me the 4th person on a Star Trek Away party? Useless character in an adventuring party, that's for sure!

I love how high my CHA is though. And I think Gollum would be proud of my rogue-like mastery of sneak-attacks.


Apr. 12th, 2008 08:41 am
amalthya: (Marbles In Your Nose)
Wow, maybe "reunion" should be synonymous with "drunk".

But, I'm on my way down to Maryland to see Cherry Blossoms and Adam and whoever is free!

We're thinking about hitting the Cherry Blossoms tomorrow, Sunday, and we're around today if [ profile] grysar or Reene are too.

Anyone have any plans?

[I'll write about the reunion at some point when gnomes aren't tapdancing in my head]
amalthya: (death star)
I love that TNT and SpikeTV are having a Nerd Off ... one is showing Lord of the Rings all day and the other is showing Star Wars.

I won't reveal which one I'm watching.

The weekend ended too quickly, as did my life tonight when I turned on the "Self Clean" option on my stove and nearly passed out from smoke inhalation before I realized what was going on.

Sundays always go fast because either Adam or I have the time constraint of whatever bus/train that is leaving to go back to our respective state. You realize, sometimes though, that distance doesn't always matter after the following spurred a very amusing text-message-conversation.

I was incredibly amused when Jesus Taco stuck a delivery menu under my front door.

Not that I'd ever want to order from them, but everytime I pass their storefront I sort of have to laugh. So I sent Adam a text message to let him know that < waving hands excitedly> THEY NOW DELIVERED!!

Me: Jesus Taco just slipped a menu under the door!!
Adam: Take this taco. It is my body which is given for the forgiveness of sins.
Me: This is not salsa. It is my blood. Take it in remembrance of me.
Me: These are my taco kisses. Honor my sacrifice by accepting them.

In other peculiarly funny things, has anyone else seen this Celebrex commercial that is like, 4 minutes long, seems to disparage Celebrex extensively, and then ends up being a commercial telling you to buy it? I'm not sure whether it's using reverse psychology or what.

"Celebrex! It's dangerous!! It'll keeel you! Buy it buy it buy it!!!!!

I think they should stick with Millard Fillmore Soap-On-A-Rope
amalthya: (Default)
Saw this article on [ profile] jinamoore's blog today:

Ivory Coast's Fetish

...I'm SO amused

(and also, moving)

Book Theft

Apr. 1st, 2008 12:45 pm
amalthya: (reading)
I've always found it funny when I do Bin Pickup at the library (collecting books that are put in the return bins outside the main entrance) that we'll be checking in some of the books -- that don't seem to have ever been checked out. They are not charged to anyone, and have no return dates, so basically, someone just took them from the library.

How is this possible? Aren't all books supposed to be sensitized when they come back in? If someone went to the trouble of stealing them, why bother to return them?

Another girl who came in last week was not so lucky:

As she'd left Butler, her bag set off the sensor, and, inside, there was a book from the Science library. She was told to come upstairs and see someone about desensitizing it, so she came up to me, pushed the book across the counter and told me to do just that.

Instead, I asked her for her ID, to see if the book was, in fact, charged to her. It was, but it was also a) a book that wasn't supposed to be in circulation. AND it was marked as "Lost". AND it had a recall on it.

I told the girl to wait (I still had her ID *and* the book) and I went back to consult my boss, who contacted the science library manager who affirmed that yes, he wanted his book back right away)

So, when I went back to the desk, I told the girl that we'd have to keep the book and that no, she couldn't have it back.

...She was less than pleased. Sensitization technology conquers again!
amalthya: (fuck off)
I spent the majority of Saturday with Yenni in Soho and the Bowery looking for (and buying) a light fixture for my living room that didn't look like it came from a hospital ER.

And I came to realize that a) I barely spend any time downtown these days and b) downtown is not how I remember it.

Madonna made some comments earlier this week that New York had lost its buzz and while I find her personally offensive, what she said sort of rings true.

As I sat in my super trendy cafe on Spring and Lafayette, waiting for Yenni, I noticed that the cafe had STEVIA in the sugar jar. [Pretentious check-mark number one].

But as I people-watched out the window, I noticed too that no one I saw actually looked like a New Yorker. They all seemed to be obvious tourists, maps and shopping bags in hand, or people who are clearly NOT from New York but have moved to New York and are dressing/behaving how they see New Yorkers behave on TV.

And yes, this means 800 iterations of Carrie Bradshaw et al but I feel like more importantly, the spirit of what made New York, "New York" was lost. When I was in middle school/high school, what set downtown apart was that it was different, and funky. Extremes were the norm, and there was no Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen boutique in the Meat Packing district.

It bothered me, I suppose, that none of the people I saw out the window seemed real. With their matchy-matchy outfits, and designer strollers, and enormous-insect-sunglasses, they didn't look like people who had jobs, or families, or real lives. They just looked like characters they expected to be played by on Television.

I guess all New Yorkers have had this complaint, but it does feel like what characterizes New York nowadays is not its uniqueness, but it's expense. Numerous people have pointed out that no one could live the Carrie Bradshaw lifestyle now even if they wanted to.

I think it was funnily characterized by Yenni too who said "Not even Chinese people want to go to Chinatown now."

Anyway, I still enjoy my sojourn to Montien on Thursday nights, and at least some parts of the East Village still feel like real New York. But overall, I'm coming to appreciate "upper manhattan" more and more. It may be a little rough around the edges, but no one can deny that it's real.
amalthya: (international incognito)
For the first time since I moved, I walked to school today instead of taking the bus or the subway (otherwise known as "taxi")

And, while it's still not warm enough to go sans jacket or leave my hands out of my pockets, Spring is definitely sprunging.

I think the biggest impulse that the change in weather has brought about in me is the increased desire to socialize. As little as six months ago (I think), we had semi-weekly plans! What happened!?

On another side note, it's time for crafting again. I sent an email out to the Stitch & Bitch girls to see if we can plan our next meetup. I guess I was also prompted by [ profile] yuki_onna's thirst for crafting.

Which leads me to the perfect segue - happy birthday to [ profile] justbeast!!


I take great pride in cracking walnuts; that is, getting people who are trapped in their shells to come out. So I'm feeling wildly successful that my (notoriously) surly coworker smiled TWICE in front of me today, and sang along to not one, but TWO different songs on my Energy playlist while we checked in books!

For the curious, the two songs were "September" by Earth, Wind and Fire and "Cecilia" by Simon and Garfunkel
amalthya: (top of the world)
It'd been so long that I'd ben "gone" that when I put my glasses on today at work, my eyes felt strange and strained.

But I am back at work today, and, for all intents and purposes, things seem exactly as I left them. But I've been so far since I was last here!

I went snorkeling for the first time ever. Traveling abroad seems to me to be a lot like snorkeling. At first, breathing through this tube is foreign and difficult. You can't believe that you'll actually get air to breathe and you resist. But once you stop resisting, and breathe, and look down below you through the clear crystal water and watch the color fish weaving in and out of the reefs below, it's just incredible.

Adam and I started off for Colombia last Saturday morning, excessively early, to catch our 6 am flight to Panama City and then to Cartagena, Colombia. We took Copa Airlines up on their offer to give us vouchers for later travel if we agreed to take a later flight, though we regretted it after they barely made us to our next flight and lost Adam's reservation. Oh, and flagged us for "random search". Hi insult, meet injury. Have a free pat-down too!

But even upon arriving in Panama, I was already glad that we had come. Warm, muggy and yet still breezy, an airport full of palm trees and sun, I felt like I was back in Uganda again. It was also really nice to take off the multitude layers of sweaters, coats and rain gear that we had donned for the freezing rain that waved us goodbye in New York.

Our later flight offered us a quicker layover in Panama, and who did we run into but the Frenches (another family that is an Epworth tradition). I caught up with Mrs. French and Adam and I tried to stay awake before our next flight. I had slept the entire way to Panama but he hadn't slept at all yet.

We got to Cartagena at last, and managed to navigate our way to our secondary hotel. They were supposed to send a taxi to come and collect us to take us to the hotel we were staying at the first night, but no taxi, and we didn't even have an address! Upon arriving at the second hotel (where everyone else was staying throughout the week) we had an additional stutter start when we discovered that we had no reservations, and even worse, the hotel manager called us liars!

It was, by no means, the way I wanted to start out my vacation. But my Aunt Martha handled it wonderfully, putting us up in her rented house next door. The room, consequently, was much nicer as were the accommodations. We had a private room and a woman who fed us and washed our clothes. AND a pool! I discovered as well that I had a depth of Spanish hiding inside. Encantado!

We started off with a bang! Well, a bang and a snooze. The rehearsal dinner was held at a charming ocean-side restaurant, with live music, a cool breeze and delicious food! I even managed to say "I am a vegetarian, I don't eat meat" and they made me, specially, some grilled eggplant with Stuff. Poor Adam, exhausted from the day, fell asleep, upright, at the table, in his suit.

Had there only been some soup for him to fall into!

Sunday was another early day, when we woke up at the crack of it to go out to an island off the coast of Colombia. We arrived at our own little private beach, complete with AYCD beer, lounge chairs, sunny beaches, coconuts to drink out of and music filtering through the air from a stereo at the top end of the beach.

Oh, and a bunch of haggard-looking locals, very keen to sell us coral and pearl necklaces.

And I did, I bought some! Some as gifts, some for me. People know that I'm usually more keen on earrings than necklaces, but maybe I'll just change it up! For a little while, at least.

We also swam, and snorkeled, and the water was so salty! I was glad to have the snorkel masks to protect my eyes. It was like the beach at Fire Island, but much prettier, mostly because the water was so radiant.

I was the only light-skinned person I think NOT to get horribly sunburned, but I know by now from Gingers 101 what to do.

We literally spent ALL DAY at the beach. We went out with the other "youngins" in the posse to see other locations in the islands. We (foolishly) decided to jump off the boat and swim around. I didn't count on 1) Adam's trouble swimming in choppy water and 2) My inability to heave my ass back up into the boat without benefit of a ladder or anything else.

All loss of dignity aside, we still had an awesome time, and I'll admit that I was sad to have to go back to the mainland. Additionally, I hadn't gotten the camera to work yet so I had to contend with a day of no picture taking either!

We got back, pooped, and had more people over for more DINNER!

Dinners in Colombia are so late. It felt really strange to us that, while we were only an hour off of our regular time GMT-wise, things all seemed to start at a much later hour every day. Dinner reservations at 10:30pm shouldn't seem strange, I guess, coming from New York, but they did!

The company was nice too, seeing people I hadn't seen in years and years, though I've discovered that I'm pretty much set in my ways of Conservation Conversations. I've transitioned into a phase where, when I talk about my time in Uganda/Congo and the chimps and their outlook, it's difficult to not be depressing. And really, when you're depressing, no one wants to talk to you about it any more.

I was most glad to have Adam there. He brought a sense of levity even when I was feeling heavy with family drama. He was always eager to go with the flow, and I think, for the first time, I actually had free time that wasn't parameterized. It was not "have fun for 3 hours and then go and do X."

It was "have fun..."

The relief of that was immeasurably good. Even now, despite everyone else being the same cranky people, I feel like this weight has been lifted, and I've floated through the day. One of my coworkers said I seemed "spring-y". And I feel it too.

The wedding itself was beautiful, and we danced until past 1 am. Even though we went home early, I didn't feel like we missed anything. After the wedding was over, we had three whole days to decompress. And do more nothing. We went shopping, had lunches, tasted wines and generally relaxed as though we had no cares in the world.

Manicures and pedicures are huge in Cartagena, and roaming ladies who'll come to your house, or come to the beach, or come wherever you and your hands and feet are to pamper and paint them.

It didn't feel much like I was that far away from the US, funnily. Sure, everything was in Spanish, but isn't it like that in parts of California?

Everything was clean, and pretty, and brightly colored and full of flowers and relaxation.

Getting back to New York, Adam and I were both deluged with bullshit. Fred had done a terrible, irresponsible job taking care of the cats. My mother decided to yell at me, and Adam's mother immediately tried to guilt him into visiting. I don't know how long it'll last, but for now, even when the shit hits, (like it seems to be doing right now at work) I can just imagine being in the pool in Cartagena, or lying in the hammock with the breeze gusting through, playing sudoku on my DS.

Classes tonight, work tomorrow. You can't expect the world to pause forever.

Photos are here: Flickr Set
amalthya: (bad day)
[ profile] astralina and I had a discussion today, commiserating because we're both having shitty days at work. And I thought to myself, when you're having a shitty day, you take it out on your coworkers, and then they have a shitty day, and they take it out on other people, and it's really just a vicious cycle.

I guess my co-worker was having a bad day, because he pulled rank on me and made me do one of the things HE's supposed to do that sucks while he sat at the desk and chatted on meebo. And when I'd done 90% of it and the hour was done and I changed stations, he told me to go back and finish it, all the while leisurely chatting online.

Seriously? He complains bitterly when another department foists off the worst job - outdoor bin pickup - on us and says that it's lame to have to do something that sucks when someone else is too lazy to do his/her job. Too bad that whinging eye can't be turned inward.

But, in my bad mood, I checked up on my laptop, which, as you may remember, was brought in for the THIRD time in 6 weeks last Wednesday. Last Wednesday, I was told the repairs would take 1-2 days, that I was on the top of the queue, and that they were so sorry that the time before that I'd come in they hadn't just replaced my logic board THEN and saved me all the trouble.
When I called today, EIGHT DAYS LATER, they told me I was at the top of the queue. Which somehow implies that the queue hasn't moved for eight days, which I find hard to believe.

So, in my bad mood, I yelled at the girl for hijacking my laptop and not giving me any options and I berated her for probably 10 minutes.

And I bet now that she's having a bad day.

What do you do when you're having a bad day?

Amazingly, someone who came to the circulation desk 12 minutes ago said that it was so nice to be "serviced" by someone so friendly/perky. I think in subsequent interactions my mood has been less concealed, mostly when people ask me consistently stupid questions.

"I'm going into the stacks to find this book. Do you think I can find it in five minutes?"

Is there really any other response other than "Can you?"

Anyway, tell me something happy, or something that makes YOU happy, or something that you do to make yourself feel better on shitty days.
amalthya: (necklace)
I'm always sort of overwhelmed when I read some of my friends' LJ entries. Overwhelmed with pride, because they are launching confidently into original/innovative endeavors, but also overwhelmed by the seemingly limitless extents of their knowledge.

And I guess the fear that runs across my mind is, how can I possibly stand among such giants? It's a beautiful thing to see, these elaborate weavings of people who are so well-versed in their crafts, and well-versed in verse itself! I could never quote a poet on the fly, a fact that has only partially caused me to review my own knowledge.

Maybe now that I have more free time, I should get back to reading? I guess I've lost focus with this post and with life but I guess I'm just impressed and feel a bit alienated by it. If only someone could banter explicitly with me about the foraging habits of the orangutan!

amalthya: (death star)
I was reminded by [ profile] lights_out's video post that I never made any mention of my time in Ohio with my Stepfather's Granddaughter's Daughter. What does that make her to me? I'm not sure, other than adorable.

Anyway, she was given to me to entertain for a few hours, and I decided that we should watch Return of the Jedi since it was on television. I'm always in support of fostering little nerds.

Funnily, she didn't ask as many questions as the caregivers on the island in Uganda. They seemed to be thrown off by the idea of humanoid-looking robots, and began to think that everything (and everyone) was a robot as a result.

Is he a robot?
Yes, that's C3PO.
What about him?
No, that's Darth Vader. He just has a robotic body because he was badly burned.
What about him?
No, no, that's Alec Guiness.

I guess I can see how it would get a little confusing.

Anyway, this little girl didn't have any questions, but she seemed to have all the answers.

Me: Okay, so that's Emperor Palpatine, a SITH LORD, and he's very very very evil!
Her: I knew that already.
Me: (skeptical) Oh yea? How did you know he was evil?
Her: Because he doesn't brush his teeth.

Knowing this crucial piece of information, I've been able to discern evil far better since!

In that light, I will share [ profile] lights_out's link:

Also, as a funny sidenote, how telling is it that when I tried to add the tag "children" to this entry, the autocomplete was certain that I meant "chimpanzee"
amalthya: (gross)
Big Happy Birthday wishes to my dad today. He's turning 70! Belated Happy Birthday also to my Aunt Margaret and to [ profile] woofa

It's been a crappy couple of weeks and I've been loathe to post because I really didn't want to chronicle my failures. "Hey, it's Laura! Taking time out of her schedule of already being behind to post some self-deprecating drivel! OMG, here's a meme!"

The cycle of shame consumed me, as I was perpetually behind and constantly owing somebody something.

This past weekend, I saw my dad for birthday bridge celebrations and he and I had a long talk about what my obligations were. We agreed that having enough time for this fantastic internship was important... I mean, they're putting me and the other intern on the website, and we might even get credit when the paper is written. That is -thrilling-.

But after going through the hours it takes me to do each class' assigment(s), class time, work time and internship time, I was clocking about 85 hours a week. I mean, no wonder I'm behind. Dammit.

Here I was at the boiling point, though. Why am I so prone to overcommit myself? And so quick to punish myself when I can't deliver? I really don't own enough spandex to be a superhero...

Anyway, everyone was breathing down my neck for late things, and I talked to my dean yesterday and he authorized me to drop two classes. Maybe three, but I need to talk to the third professor. I'm not sure yet.

Knowing that I was going to reduce my incredibly stressing workload was SUCH a relief. Last night, I stayed up just for fun. It's been ages since I did that.

Spring break starts next week, Adam and I are going away, and I just can't wait.

Now, it's classtime. Things feel better.


amalthya: (Default)

November 2009

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